Minus: Extremely Simple File Sharing With 10GB of Free Online Storage
Drag some files into your browser and instantly get a link to share them with family or friends. It’s this simplicity, along with a staggering 10GB of free storage space, that puts Minus among the best file sharing tools on the web today.
Last December we profiled the then-new photo sharing tool Minus. The web app only worked for photos then. Almost a year later and Minus does so much more. With support for any file format, apps for all major platforms and a very generous amount of free online storage, Minus is the solution to the file sharing problem.
“We wanted to offer the simplest possible sharing service” the creators claim on their website. They did. Minus sports an elegant interface with no clutter and makes sharing even large files extremely easy. Simply put: this is file sharing done right.
Head to minus.com to get started. You can drag files to your browser to get uploaded right away, but I highly recommend you first get an account. Once you do you’ll see your dashboard, containing all the folders you’ve uploaded. Uploading another file, or collection of files, is as simple as dragging it or them from your computer’s file browser to your web browser window:
Drag and drop multiple files and Minus will take care of the rest, uploading the files for you and putting them in their own folder. You can track what is and what isn’t uploaded yet easily:
Note that you’ll need to be using a modern HTML-5 browser for this to work. You can upload any file that is under 2GB (a very generous ceiling).
Before the uploading is even done you’ll have access to various links. Whether you want to share a link to a single file or an entire folder of files, you’ll find what you’re looking for:
Copy these and send to your friends. They can then download the files. They can also browse all the media files you’ve added to a given folder, should you send them the gallery link. For example, I created a folder full of covers from the MakeUseOf Manuals project.
You can explore this gallery yourself by clicking here.
Note that galleries let people preview documents, pictures and even media files. Check out this gallery to see that in action.
Desktop & Other Clients
With such a complete web app, a desktop app hardly seems necessary. You’ll find apps though, for Windows, Mac and Linux which you can download here.
The desktop interface is very simple, allowing you to do everything you can on the web. Here is how it looks on Ubuntu:
A tray icon gives you an always-ready place to drag files to. Simply drag them to your tray and you will be uploading quickly:
Also offered are smartphone apps for iPhone and Android; a Windows Phone 7 app is in development.
So what are the limits to this service? As I said earlier, free accounts only get 10GB of storage. That is probably plenty for most people, but enthusiasts of Minus might well pay for more space. The other main limit is for individual files – 2GB is the largest upload you can do.
In terms of in-browser previews, currently only images, PDFs, text documents, music and video files are supported. Support for Microsoft Office files is coming soon.
Like I said: I think this is file sharing done right. It’s simple enough that anyone can use it, and isn’t cluttered with advertisements or built-in delays. I highly recommend you check it out.
Do you know of a better tool for sharing files? By all means, let us know in the comments below. Also feel free to let us know how Minus works for you, or to share some links to cool files on Minus.
Image Credit : xkcd 949
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